Joey Fatone — former N’SYNC member, Dancing with the Stars contestant, host, entertainer, and man of many hats — will be taking the stage tonight in a much-talked-about reunion with Justin Timberlake, JC Chasez, Lance Bass and Chris Kirkpatrick at MTV’s Video Music Awards tonight. Outside of this exciting performance, he’s stepping into the limelight with a new show for the Live Well Network, My Family Recipe Rocks. “It’s exciting. We actually go into people’s homes and watch normal, everyday people in everyday kitchens break down their recipes that they’ve passed down for many generations,” he shares. “I think it’s a really cool idea.” The star loves that he gets to meet so many families from different backgrounds across America who share their unique meal ideas with him.
With experience being on the Food Network as well as dabbling in cooking at home, it’s no secret that Fatone is comfortable in the kitchen. On My Family Recipe Rocks, he has encountered recipes that harken back to his own Italian roots and bring up memories of making his father’s sauce and meatball recipe, while other times, he comes across food he’s never made or even tried before. “In one episode, this woman makes a sauce with meatballs that was very similar to what I make — just a few little things were different,” the star says. “And it’s also really cool to see things I’ve never seen or would have thought of, like baba ganoush.” Thanks to the show, Fatone’s had the opportunity to meet people from every walk of life and all kinds of backgrounds — from Egyptian and Middle Eastern to India to Irish and Italian.
The family man has put his newly-honed culinary skills to good use at home too. “I’ve made a lot of recipes from the show for my family. If I don’t have the recipe, I always try to figure it out and remember what it was made of.” One delicious recipe he tried out was a dish called Saucy Balls. It has ground pork and turkey made into a meatball with cream cheese and different herbs that is then wrapped in a pastry puff and drizzled with a balsamic glaze after cooking. And that’s just one of the many mouth-watering recipes that people pass on to the celebrity host!
My Family Recipe Rocks aims to bring families together over meals. “It’s fun to be creative and try to incorporate the recipes from the show at home — like every Friday night have a cooking night with the whole family,” the host comments. “I think that’s part of what’s cool about the show. It inspires people who never thought they could cook and actually feed their family.”
His wife Kelly and their two daughters, Briahna and Kloey, enjoy cooking as much as Fatone does, and together, they love making traditional family recipes as well as breaking out the cookbook and trying something new. His older daughter even made the couple salmon with dill sauce for their anniversary one year. “I’m not a salmon person at all, but I was shocked because it was really good!”
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The star chalks up his strong marriage to understanding. “Its not easy. You need to be understanding,” he explains. “You’ve got to balance you career and home life, and you have to spend time with the kids.” On date nights, he and Kelly enjoy going out for Indian food or trying somewhere new. “We like to try different restaurants in our city. She’ll pick a place one week, and I’ll pick one another week. It’s good. We enjoy trying new spots.”
For him, his lovely daughters are the most amazing part of his life. Even when he was on tour with N’SYNC, he still made time for his children, and sometimes, he even brought Brihana with him when he was traveling with the group.
Looking back on his career, Fatone says, “Being a semi-finalist on Dancing with the Stars was fun, and performing with legends like Michael Jackson and Celine Dion was equally awesome,” he recalls. “When I sit back and think about all the things that I’ve done, it’s kind of mind-boggling. It’s just been really amazing.”
Be sure to tune in to watch Fatone’s performance at the VMAs on MTV at 9 p.m. ET! You also can watch him showcase unique recipes from families across American on My Family Recipe Rocks! on the Live Well Network — visit the website for episodes and recipes. Connect with the star on his website or follow him on Twitter and Facebook.